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Developer(s) TSS - Transport Simulation Systems
Stable release Aimsun 8 / May 20, 2013 (2013-05-20)
Operating system Microsoft Windows XP/Vista/7 (32- and 64-bit versions), Windows Server 2003/2008 R2 (32- and 64-bit versions), Mac OS X 10.6.6 (Snow Leopard), Linux Ubuntu 10.04 Compatible distribution
Type Traffic simulation, computer-aided engineering software, traffic engineering, transportation planning, emergency evacuation
License Proprietary

Aimsun is an integrated transport modelling software, developed and marketed by TSS - Transport Simulation Systems based in Barcelona, Spain.

Aimsun software is used by government agencies, municipalities, universities and consultants worldwide for traffic engineering, traffic simulation, transportation planning and emergency evacuation studies. It is used to improve road infrastructure, reduce emissions, cut congestion and design urban environments for vehicles and pedestrians.

The latest version - Aimsun 8 - was released in May 2013.

Aimsun has over 2,900 licensed users in 65 countries.[1] It is also used as a decision support system for real-time, simulation-based online traffic forecasting as Aimsun Online.

Product features[edit]

Aimsun 8 fuses travel demand modelling with mesoscopic, microscopic and hybrid simulation – all within a single software application.

Travel Demand Modelling[edit]

A Four-step Model Experiment, contained in a Four-step Model Scenario, can be used to manage the whole Four-step Model process.

The main steps in this model are:

  • Trip Generation
  • Trip Distribution
  • Modal Split (which in Aimsun 8 is simultaneous with Trip Distribution)
  • Traffic Assignment

In order to manage all the data these new features require, new objects added to Aimsun include Transportation Modes, Time Periods, Vectors, Areas, Generation/Attraction and Distribution Data Sets, Public Transport Sections and Stations, Distribution + Modal Split and Public Transport functions. Aimsun Expert also introduces a number of new visualisation modes and outputs that are standard requirements of the traffic demand modelling community. Those include select link analysis, generation-attraction plots, public transport assignment loads, and more.

Hybrid Simulation[edit]

The Aimsun hybrid simulator offers simultaneous microscopic and mesoscopic simulation, combining an event-based mesoscopic model for large areas with a more detailed time-sliced microsimulator for smaller areas that require a finer level of detail.

The hybrid simulator features the following:

  • Definition of areas for microscopic simulation within a mesoscopically simulated network
  • Legion for Aimsun available inside the microscopic areas
  • Demand definition using O/D matrices or traffic states
  • Unified statistics collection
  • Look-ahead propagation between microscopic and mesoscopic areas
  • Dynamic traffic assignment based on stochastic route choice
  • Hybrid simulator applicable to sub-networks
  • Dynamic traffic assignment based on dynamic user equilibrium
  • Traffic management

Mesoscopic simulation[edit]

Used by practitioners to model dynamic aspects of very large networks. Aimsun software combines simplified car-following and lane changing for quicker simulation with detailed microscopic modelling of key events and sections.

Microscopic simulation[edit]

Features include car-following and lane changing models, real-world calibrated parameters and scalable simulation.

Dynamic traffic assignment[edit]

Two schemes can be used for mesoscopic or microscopic simulation based on statistical distribution or driver selected routes.

Vehicle-pedestrian simulation[edit]

Aimsun has formed a partnership with Legion to form Legion for Aimsun, a pedestrian simulation application that is integrated inside Aimsun software as a plug-in. It enables traffic engineers and planners to model how vehicles and pedestrians interact with each other in any urban environment.

Other features[edit]

  • Creation of vehicle actuated signals
  • Introduction of public transport priority schemes
  • Definition of traffic management strategies using triggers and actions
  • Import, editing and manipulation of OD data
  • Management of scenarios, iterations and replications
  • Production of outputs as images videos, tables or raw data


Aimsun can exchange data with CAD, GIS, transport modelling, signal optimisation and adaptive control software tools (DWG, DXF, DGN, GIS, Emme, CONTRAM, Saturn, CUBE, VISUM, VISSIM, Paramics, TRANSYT, SYNCHRO, VS-PLUS, UTOPIA, SCATS), SCOOT, ETRA, SICE, Telent and Telvent.


Aimsun can be customised using Python, Qt and C++.


Aimsun 8 is available in four editions: Small, Standard, Professional, Advanced and Expert. Note that Aimsun Professional now comes in three editions: Professional for Microscopic Simulation, Professional for Mesoscopic Simulation and Professional for Travel Demand Modelling.

Version history[edit]

Aimsun 6.1.3 was released in December 2010. Aimsun 7 was released in November 2011. Aimsun 8 was released in May 2013. Aimsun 8.0.2 was released in November 2013.

Practical applications[edit]

  • Assessment and optimisation of Transit Signal Priority (TSP) and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) schemes
  • Feasibility studies for High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) and High Occupancy Toll (HOT) lanes
  • Impact analysis of infrastructure design such as highway corridor improvement/construction
  • Environmental impact analysis
  • Toll and road pricing
  • Evaluation of travel demand management (TDM) strategies
  • Signal control plan optimisation (Aimsun-TRANSYT link) and adaptive control evaluation
  • Safety analysis
  • Evaluation of Variable Speed policies and other Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)
  • Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) analysis
  • Workzone management

External links[edit]


  • From theory to practice: Gaussian process metamodels for the sensitivity analysis of traffic simulation models. A case study of the Aimsun mesoscopic model., in: Transportation Research Record (TRR), Journal of the Transportation Research Board, Ciuffo B., Casas, J., Montanino M., Punzo, V.:2013
  • The role of simulation in advanced traffic management systems, in: Proc. of the 7th World Conf. on ITS, Torino, Barceló, J.: 2000.
  • GETRAM/AIMSUN: A software environment for microscopic traffic analysis, in: Proc. of the Workshop on Next Generation Models for Traffic Analysis, Monitoring and Management, Tucson, AZ, September, Barceló, J.: 2001.
  • The use of neural networks for short-term prediction of traffic demand, in: A. Zeder (ed.), Transportation and Traffic Theory, Pergamon, Barceló, J. and Casas, J.: 1999.
  • Dynamic network simulation with AIMSUN, Preprints of the Proc. of the Internat. Symposium on Transport Simulation, Yokohama, Kluwer, in press, Barceló, J. and Casas, J.: 2003.
  • Analysis of dynamic guidance systems by microsimulation with AIMSUN2, in: Proc. of the 6th World Conf. on ITS, Toronto, Barceló, J., Casas, J., and Ferrer, J. L.: 1999a.
  • Modeling advanced transport telematic applications with microscopic simulators: The case of AIMSUN2, in: W. Brilon, F. Huber, M. Schreckenberg and H. Wallentowitz (eds), Traffic and Mobility, Simulation, Economics, Environment, Springer, Berlin, Barceló, J., Casas, J., Ferrer, J. L., and García, D.: 1999b.


  1. ^ Aimsun user statistics